Registration takes place at the beginning of each semester. All students are required to register and no one will be granted entry to classes without having completed registration. After audition and acceptance and before the first day of classes, new students will receive placement for ensembles and instructions for registration in both music and academic courses.
Registration is not complete until all fees are paid. Each semester’s tuition is due and payable before lessons begin.
Transfer credit for studies taken through an accredited or similarly recognized educational institution will be awarded to a person working toward the VAM’s Diplomas/Degree. Transfer credit will be awarded for formal studies only on the basis of official transcripts or appropriately authenticated copies. Authenticated translation of documents may be required. Transfer credit will normally be processed by the College Registrar.
Through the generosity of various individuals and organizations, many scholarships, awards, and prizes have been established. All full-time VAM college students are eligible to apply for scholarships and bursaries. Scholarships are awarded on the basis of talent and community contributions, and require letters of recommendation. Bursaries are awarded on the basis of the needs of the student and the needs of the school, and require financial statements. Financial awards are for one year and are renewable annually for the duration of a student’s study, depending on the progress of the student and funds available. Students who are placed on academic probation will not be eligible for VAM scholarship renewal. In cases of withdrawal, VAM scholarships are automatically cancelled. Applications are on the website under “Fees, Scholarships, Bursaries”.
Bachelor of Music (Performance)
Candidates for the Bachelor of Music (Performance) Degree must earn a minimum of 127 credits in the Voice program and 121 credits in the Instrumental and Composition programs with an overall grade point average of 2.00. A specific number of credits must be taken with Thompson Rivers University Open Learning, which awards the degree in collaboration with VAM. The general education requirements ensure that the degree program satisfies the requirements of a broad basic education. Accordingly, the student must obtain 21 credits in the following courses or subjects: English Literature and Composition, Humanities, Social Science and Science/Math. Students majoring in Vocal Performance must take six credits of languages (restricted to French, Italian, German, Spanish, and Russian). Students are expected to complete at least two years in residence at VAM during which time they must meet all requirements of repertoire, performance, and curriculum. Guidelines for recital requirements are available on the website under “Student Resources”.
Candidates for the Artist Diploma must earn a minimum of 36 credit hours with an overall average of 3.00. Students are expected to complete at least two years in residence during which time course works will include private study, ensemble participation, and presentation of two full adjudicated solo recitals. The maximum time allotted for completion of all requirements is three consecutive years from the date of initial enrollment.
MPD/Bachelor of Music and Artist Diploma students are required to perform two recitals, usually in their final two years. Recitals must be adjudicated by their private teacher and one faculty member. See “Student Resources” in the VAM College website for more information on recitals.
The success of the College Program requires regular and punctual attendance at all scheduled classes. Students are required to notify the teachers in advance if they are unable to attend class, either in person or by email. More than 3 unexcused absences results in the loss of one letter grade.
All students are expected to maintain a professional attitude toward their VAM performance and classroom commitments. Regular punctual attendance at and preparation for rehearsals and classes are crucial to the attainment of professional artistic goals. It is expected that the students will conduct themselves in a manner that does not discredit VAM in any way and that they avoid all forms of dishonesty, including cheating and plagiarism. VAM reserves the right to dismiss any student who does not pay fees or deliberately acts to prevent the holding of any class, lesson, rehearsal or performance.
While on VAM premises or in the course of activities or events hosted by VAM, students:
▪ must comply with all applicable VAM policies, including the Attendance Policy;
▪ must treat all students and staff with respect and must not engage in physically aggressive, threatening, harassing, discriminatory or otherwise offensive behaviour;
▪ must not steal, misuse, destroy or deface VAM property;
▪ must not consume, possess or distribute alcohol or controlled or restricted substances; and
▪ must not contravene any provision of the Canadian Criminal Code or any other federal, provincial, or municipal statute or regulation.
Since student misconduct threatens the proper functioning of VAM, penalties may include:
- a) Warning
- b) Rejection of submitted work
- c) Cancellation of scholarships, bursaries, or work-study positions
- d) Probation or suspension
- e) Expulsion from exam, the course, or the program
- f) Legal action
- All concerns relating to student misconduct shall be directed to the Senior Education Administrator. Concerns may be brought by staff, students or the public.
- The Senior Education Administrator will arrange to meet with the student to discuss the concern(s) within 5 school days of receiving the complaint. If the alleged conduct is of such a serious nature that an immediate dismissal may be warranted the Senior Education Administrator will meet with the student as soon as possible.
- Following the meeting with the student, the Senior Education Administrator will conduct whatever further enquiry or investigation is necessary to determine whether the concerns are substantiated.
- Any necessary inquiries or investigations shall be completed within 5 school days of the initial meeting with the student.
- The Senior Education Administrator will meet with the student and do one of the following:
- Determine that the concern(s) were not substantiated;
- Determine that the concern(s) were substantiated, in whole or in part, and either:
- Give the student a warning setting out the consequences of further misconduct;
- Set a probationary period with appropriate conditions; or
- Recommend that the student be dismissed from the Institution.
- The Senior Education Administrator will prepare a written summary of the determination. A copy shall be given to the student, and the original will be placed in the student file.
- If the student is issued a warning or placed on probation, the Senior Education Administrator and the student both sign the written warning or probationary conditions and the student is given a copy. The original document is placed in the student’s file.
- If the recommendation is to dismiss the student, the Senior Education Administrator of the school will meet with the student to dismiss him or her from study at the school. The head of the school will deliver to the student a letter of dismissal and a calculation of refund due or tuition owing, depending on the status of the student’s financial account with the school.
- If a refund is due to the student, the head of school will ensure that a cheque is forwarded to the student within 30 days of the dismissal.
If the student owes tuition or other fees to the school, the head of the school may undertake the collection of the amount owing.
The Vancouver Academy of Music is committed to ensuring that its learning environment promotes the respectful and fair treatment of all students. VAM has a responsibility to provide a safe and civil environment for students; appropriate behaviour is expected from students, administrators, faculty, staff and volunteers. While on VAM premises or during activities or events hosted by VAM, bullying, harassment, intimidation and discrimination are prohibited.
Bullying, harassment, intimidation, or discrimination means any gesture or written, verbal or physical act that takes place on school property, or at any school-sponsored function that: a) is motivated by any actual or perceived characteristic, such as race, colour, religion, ancestry, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, or a mental, physical or sensory disability; and, b) a reasonable person should know, under the circumstances, that the act(s) will have the effect of harming a student or damaging the student’s property, or placing a student in reasonable fear of harm to his person or damage to his property; or c) has the effect of insulting or demeaning any student or group of students in such a way as to cause substantial disruption in, or substantial interference with, the orderly operation of the school.
Sexual misconduct includes the following: sexual assault, sexual exploitation, sexual harassment, stalking, indecent exposure, voyeurism, the distribution of a sexually explicit photograph or video of a person to one or more persons other than the person in the photograph or video without the consent of the person in the photograph or video and with the intent to distress the person in the photograph or video, the attempt to commit an act of sexual misconduct and the threat to commit an act of sexual misconduct.
If you wish to make a complaint or a report of an incident of improper behaviour at VAM, you should contact either the College Registrar at [email protected], or the Senior Education Administrator at [email protected]. All conversations will be strictly confidential. VAM will not, in any way, retaliate against any individual who, in good faith, makes a complaint or report of improper behaviour, or participates in the investigation of such a complaint or report.
The Senior Education Administrator will determine which course of action or punishment is necessary, as outlined in VAM’s Standard of Conduct Policy.
When a concern arises, the student should first attempt to address it with the individual most directly involved. If unsatisfied with the outcome, the student should submit a written complaint to the College Registrar within thirty days (Dr. Enns, [email protected]). Should this person be absent or be named in the complaint the student should submit the written complaint to the Senior Education Administrator (Mr. Elworthy, [email protected]).
The College Registrar or Senior Education Administrator will arrange to meet with the student to discuss the concern as soon as possible and within 10 days of receiving the student’s written complaint. Following the meeting with the student, the College Registrar or Senior Education Administrator will conduct whatever inquiries and/or investigations are necessary and provide a written response to the student that includes reasons for the determination on the complaint. The written reasons will be provided no later than 21 days following the receipt of the student’s written complaint.
Students making a complaint may be represented by an agent or a lawyer. Students will not be subject to any retaliation as a result of their complaint. After exhausting the dispute resolution process, a student may file a claim with the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Advanced Education (www.privatetraininginstitutions.gov.bc.ca) on the basis that the institution misled the student regarding any significant aspect of an approved program.
Plagiarism, the presentation of another person’s words or ideas without acknowledgement of the source, is considered dishonest and academically unacceptable. Any student found guilty of plagiarism will receive an automatic zero on the portion of the course where plagiarism was involved. A second offence will result in a failing grade for the Course. Students in doubt about what constitutes plagiarism should consult the instructor.
A student will be eligible to sit for an examination at VAM provided that the student is registered for the course leading to the examination, or the student has been specifically authorized to sit the examination under the following sections of these regulations.
For each examination there will be an invigilator who will be responsible for the conduct of the examinations. Each examination will be conducted on the date and time assigned to the student by the instructor. The time allowed for the examination will be that specified on the question paper. No additional time will be allowed to candidates who arrive late for an examination. A candidate may be liable to such penalties as VAM may determine for any misconduct or breach of the examination regulations.
c) Absence from examination
In the case of absence from an examination through ill health, the candidate must submit a relevant medical certificate and a written explanation of the absence, to be received by the Executive Director within seven days of the examination. A student who, with acceptable cause, misses a mandatory examination may be permitted to take a regular examination at the next examination period or be permitted to take a special or supplemental examination, if such an examination is available. A $75.00 fee will be charged for a special or supplementary examination.
d) Examination grade
Examination grades will be made available to the student along with the final course grade.
e) Credit by Examination (Course Challenge)
VAM provides a mechanism for students who have acquired knowledge other than by formal study to receive credit for specified courses by examination. Course challenges must be taken within the first two weeks of the classes. A student must receive a minimum grade of B+ to acquire credit for a specific course. Applied Music and Ensemble classes are not available for Course Challenge.
Students may not register for credit by examination for any course which they have previously challenged unsuccessfully. After unsuccessful challenge in two courses, no further registration for credit by examination will normally be allowed.
f) Appeal of Grade
Although final grades are reviewed carefully before release, students will have the right to appeal. Appeal should be submitted in writing, accompanied by the grade appeal fee ($50.00), to the Registrar, to arrive within twenty-one days of the mailing date of grades. The grade appeal fee will be refunded if the appeal is successful. The appeal should contain full particulars of the grounds of the appeal. Grade appeal will be considered by a committee, which includes the appropriate academic representatives of the subject, and chaired by the Executive Director. Appeals will be adjudicated within 21 days of receipt of the paperwork.
All academic records for students are kept on file in the College Registrar’s office and are available to students on request. At the end of each semester, students are provided with an unofficial transcript of grades; this includes their grade point average and credits accumulated for that semester.
Students remain in good standing as long as they maintain a 2.0 grade-point average. Students whose grade-point averages fall below this level will be placed on academic probation for one semester. A student placed on academic probation will have his/her status reviewed by the Executive Director and/or College Registrar and may be suspended from VAM if satisfactory progress is not made by the end of the semester. Any student who receives a C or lower in his/her major instrument will automatically be placed on probation. Failure to improve the grade within the next semester may result in dismissal.
Students will be provided with faculty evaluation forms at the end of the academic year.
Due to Protection of Privacy legislation, Vancouver Academy of Music cannot assist or give student record access to a third party without permission from the student.
The Vancouver Academy of Music is certified with the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) of the British Columbia Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training. Before you enroll at a certified private training institution, you should be aware of your rights and responsibilities.
You have the right to be treated fairly and respectfully by the institution.
You have the right to a student enrolment contract that includes the following information:
- amount of tuition and any additional fee for your program
- refund policy
- if your program includes a work experience, the requirements to participate in the work experience and the geographic area where it will be provided
- whether the program was approved by PTIB or does not require approval.
Make sure you read the contract before signing. The institution must provide you with a signed copy.
You have the right to access the institution’s dispute resolution process and to be protected against retaliation for making a complaint.
You have the right to make a claim to PTIB for a tuition refund if:
- your institution ceased to hold a certificate before you completed an approved program
- you were misled about a significant aspect of your approved program.
You must file the claim within one year of completing, being dismissed or withdrawing from your program.
Questions about the VAM College Programs?
If you have questions, please email: [email protected]